What we do
Refuge4Pets was founded in August 2017. We are a registered charity in England and Wales and our Registered Charity Number is 1174331. We are a small team of dedicated Project Workers, a Committee of Trustees and a growing network of Volunteer Pet Foster Carers and Fundraising Volunteers.
Pet Fostering Service
We foster dogs, cats, horses, birds, reptiles, rabbits and other pets such as guinea pigs, hamsters, gerbils and fish. We will foster any animal (even livestock and exotics) as long as we have a suitable foster home. We foster animals for up to 6 months and provide everything the animals need while they are in foster care.
Our pet foster carers are volunteers who are committed to caring for animals. They are carefully recruited to make sure they offer the best possible temporary foster homes. Our foster families care for animals until it is safe for them to be reunited with their owners.
We understand that victim survivors of domestic violence and abuse often have to leave with nothing. This is why we supply everything that their animals need such as food, bedding, toys while the animals are being cared for by one of our pet foster carers. We also cover the cost of any veterinary treatment and medicines required during their time with us.
Support for Service Users
We make sure that service users are kept up to date with how their animals are doing in foster care and we send pictures regularly.
We also run monthly meet ups with families that we foster for. This time enables survivors to come together for a range of activities, usually outdoors with animals. Monthly meet ups are for adults and children and can help build positive support networks, confidence and self-esteem.
Support for Volunteers
We are a small team, but we are on hand to provide support to volunteers around the clock. If you are a pet foster carer you can contact your Project Worker directly Monday to Friday between 10am and 3pm. In an emergency, outside of these hours please call 0300 4000 121 and we will get back to you.
Each month, we get together for various activities as a team in locations across Devon, Cornwall and Somerset.
Training for Professionals
We are developing our training for professionals. This training aims to raise awareness about the link between domestic violence and abuse and animal abuse. Developing this understanding is essential in terms of safeguarding adults, children and animals. The training will be on offer to a broad range of professionals working with people and animals.
More details coming soon about this training with dates, venues and how to book.
Educational Talks to Local Groups
If you run a local group and you would like us to give a talk to your group about our service and why we exist, we are always happy to do so. We don’t charge for talks because we are just happy to raise awareness about our service.
Our community events are currently on hold due to COVID-19. As soon as we know more, we will let you know the events we are attending and when.
Our Purpose, Vision, Values & Strategy
To enable freedom from domestic violence and abuse for people and animals.
We offer victims/survivors of domestic violence and abuse a pet fostering service to remove a significant barrier which prevents many victims/survivors from leaving. We empower victims/survivors to access the vital safety and support they need before being reunited with their much-loved pets. We believe that animals are an important part of victims/survivors’ coping strategies. We are working to reduce loneliness and isolation by enabling people to recover from trauma with the help of animal companionship and the therapeutic benefits this brings to people.
Refuge4Pets determination in achieving its objectives are derived from its values of:
- Empathy We understand what people and animals have been through and how they feel.
- Equality We believe that everyone is equal and has the right to live free of violence and abuse.
- Empowerment We empower victims/survivors to regain control of their lives and access vital safety and support.
- Effectiveness We work efficiently and effectively to achieve our vision.
- Integrity We are honest and have strong moral principles.
Refuge4Pets main priorities for 2020/21 are:
- Priority 1 To reach victims/survivors who need our support to escape domestic violence and abuse.
- Priority 2 To support victims/survivors of domestic violence and abuse across the communities that we work by bringing people together to form positive support networks.
- Priority 3 To develop and support volunteers to increase their health and wellbeing and reach their personal goals.
- Priority 4 To ensure our financial sustainability so that we can continue to deliver and develop our service.